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Friday 31 August 2018

Disco Friday #7 - Hairbrush Divas

Another series which is limping towards it's conclusion.
Today we feature two of a large selection of fairly cheesy various artists compilations which I am denying any knowledge of.

From Hairbrush Divas Party! Disc 2 (Music you just have to sing along to) we start with Deniece Williams and Let's Hear It For The Boy which surprisingly was not her biggest hit.It reached number 2 following it's release in May 84 narrowly missing equaling her 1977 number 1 Free

Again Chaka Khan had a number 1 with I Feel For You. Not a patch on I'm Every Woman which only reached 11 in 78 with a re-mix reaching number 8 in 89.
From The Very Best of All Women - The Platinum Collection (CD1)

Chaka Khan, let me rock you
Let me rock you, Chaka Khan

Thursday 30 August 2018

I'm Not Afraid of You

About a month or so ago Jez featured some music by Carmel. At the time I commented that I had some stuff by her and that I really should get round to playing some of it.
I've now finally done just that. Turns out I've more of Ms McCourt's records than I thought - namely The Drum is Everything, The Falling and the 12 inch of I'm Not Afraid of You which is the one  I'm featuring today.

Confusingly the 2 songs on the b-side are in a different order to that listed on the sleeve.
They are also probably as near to Jazz as you are ever likely to get on these pages

Carmel -I'm Not Afraid of You (Extended Remix)

Carmel - Daddy Long Legs

Carmel - Energize My Soul

Wednesday 29 August 2018

Little and Large #7

Hands by Little Boots is one of the many charity shop acquisitions that I played on purchase and then filed away and which rarely saw the light of day thereafter.
The hidden track  Hands at the end is a belter but I can't rip it without including the one before so you are getting Symmetry where she is joined by the great Phil Oakley.

Biggie Tembo was the lead singer of the majestic Bhundu Boys. Unfortunately  his subsequent solo stuff was not a patch on his work with the band.
Tragically Biggie completed suicide in 1995 at the age of 37 while a patient in a psychiatric hospital.

This series is beginning to loose some momentum but I'll see if I can stretch it to 10.

Little Boots - Symmetry

Biggie Tembo - Punza

Tuesday 28 August 2018

The Executioner's Last Songs

Yesterday's posting of Delilah immediately put me in mind of the Executioner's Last Songs a project by Jon Langford and the Pine Valley Cosmonauts.
Where they consign songs of murder, mob-law and cruel ,cruel punishment to the realm of myth, memory and history with any proceeds going to benefit The Illinois Coalition Against the Death Penalty. A worthy cause as I'm sure you will all agree.
They are joined by various guests on 18 great interpretations all of which are worthy of a feature.
After due consideration I've gone for Dean Schlabowske's version of the great Gary Gilmore's Eyes by the Adverts and Jenny Toomey's take on Cole Porter's Miss Otis Regrets.

The good news is that there are a further two volumes.The bad news for some of you is that's the next two Tuesday's sorted.

The Pine Valley Cosmonauts (feat Dean Schlabowske) - Gary Gilmore's Eyes

The Pine Valley Cosmonauts (feat. Jenny Toomey) - Miss Otis Regrets

Monday 27 August 2018

This Song is Inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson

I'm not really a fan of live albums and I suspect I probably only have a couple of dozen if that..
My favourite is undoubtedly The Sensational Alex Harvey Band Live at the Hammersmith Odeon on 24th May 1975.
First owned on cassette and subsequently upgraded to second hand vinyl for a quid when you could by vinyl at sensible prices.
The Tomahawk Kid  followed by Delilah. With all due respect to Sir Tom this is THE definitive version.

Partly inspired by the homage to Alex Harvey on the recent BBC Rip it Up documentary and a newspaper article featuring Ted McKenna extolling the virtues of fellow drummer Keith Moon.

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band - The Tomahawk Kid

The Sensational Alex Harvey Band - Delilah

Sunday 26 August 2018

My Son Calls Another Man Daddy

When Jr was good

No accidental series of the Most Country of Country Song Titles would be complete without a contribution from The Hillbilly Shakespeare himself Hank Williams.

My Son Calls Another Man Daddy is a salutary tale about the perils of going down the wrong road, ending up in jail and coming out to find that your family have moved on in your absence. A lesson there if ever there was one.

Surprisingly given the subject nature of many of his songs there are not that many which would be automatically included in this series.

Hank Williams -My Son Calls Another Man Daddy

Hank Williams -Take These Chains From My Heart

Saturday 25 August 2018

Sin City Revisited

I've been laid low this week with a bad bug and have been pretty unwell.
So I have had neither the time nor the  inclination to come up with something original today.

Rather I am revisiting the Sin City compilation which I featured last Saturday and featuring some of the excellent acts who missed the cut first time around.
I thought that I had previously posted the title track but it turns out that I have only shared a cover version by Beck and Emmylou Harris.
Green on Red and The Blasters are old friends of this blog and always merit a post from time to time.

The Flying Burrito Brothers - Sin City

Green on Red - Sea of Cortez

The Blasters - Hollywood Bed

Friday 24 August 2018

Disco Friday #6 - Ladies Choice

Today's Disco Legends  choices come courtesy of Mrs CC.

Londoner Tina Charles hit the top spot with I Love to Love (But My Baby Loves to Dance ) in 1976.She decided against using her actual surname Hoskins lest she get confused with that other disco diva Mary Hopkins.

Tina is followed by senoritas Mayte Mateos and Maria Mendiola known collectively as Baccara  with Yes Sir, I Can Boogie a number 1 in 1977 when punk was sweeping Britain.
I've spared you this one before but Mrs CC is not quite so generous. They split in 1981 no doubt citing musical differences and (good God) set up two rival Baccaras.

By way of compensation we finish with Wild Cherry a band I suspect that even the punks had time for.

Play that funky music

Tina Charles - I Love to Love (But My Baby Loves to Dance)

Baccara - Yes Sir, I Can Boogie

Wild Cherry - Play That Funky Music

Thursday 23 August 2018


My latest charity shop acquisition is Cookahoop the 2003 debut solo album by Cerys Matthews on the Blanco y Negra label.
Recorded during her brief stay in Nashville it is produced by Bucky Baxter of Steve Earle, Bob Dylan and Ryan Adams fame and has Ken Coomer of Wilco on drums.
Most of the songs are her own compositions but I have gone for two that aren't
The opening track Chardonnay is written by Roger Cook and Hugh Cornwall (yes THAT Hugh Cornwall!).

Weightless Again is,as I'm sure you know, by Brett and Renee Sparks aka The Handsome Family and is from their peerless Through the Trees album.

Cerys Matthews -Chardonnay

Cerys Matthews -Weightless Again

Wednesday 22 August 2018

Little and Large #6

Little Village were a super group consisting of Ry Cooder, John Hiatt, Nick Lowe and Jim Keltner who released one album in 1992.
A bloke from the pub gave  me a copy of  Live in San Francisco again from 1992 .I might have played it once at the time but I have never knowingly played it since until I dusted it down for this series
Nick Lowe sums them up thus Little Village was really good fun. Unfortunately the record we did was no good.

Teardrop was a single from Mezzanine the third studio album from Massive Attack from 1998. The vocals are by Liz Fraser from the Cocteau Twins. Mushroom wanted Madonna to do the honours but he was outvoted by the other two band members.

More little and large artists next Wednesday

Little Village - Fool Who Knows

Massive Attack -Teardrop

Tuesday 21 August 2018

Wilco A.M.

Being There and Summerteeth are usually my go to Wilco albums.
They have both featured here before so I thought that instead today I would give their 1995 debut A.M. a spin.

Their first following the break up of Uncle Tupelo and the line up is essentially Uncle Tupelo without Jay Ferrar (who had started his own band Son Volt ) and with Brian Henneman from the Bottle Rockets on lead guitar.
It is pretty much a country rock album.
Thereafter Henneman moved on, Jay Bennett joined and the band moved in a different direction.

Wilco -Must Be High

Wilco - I Thought I Had You

Monday 20 August 2018

Nothing Compares 2U

Ok - let's get the elephant in the room out of the way before we crack on.
Whereas the late great Prince was obviously a musical genius he was pretty rubbish at writing and spelling properly.
Anyone under 40 can probably see nothing wrong with the title of this post but using text abbreviations instead of proper words  for both writing and texting is just plain wrong.

His version of the song is the live version with Rosie Gaines from the Ultimate Prince compilation.
I'm sure that his Royal Purpleness would acknowledge that it shades into insignificance when compared to the other two versions featured.
The King just about shades it if only for the use of proper spelling.

Prince -Nothing Compares 2U (Live)

Sinead O'Conner - Nothing Compares 2U

King Creosote -Nothing Compares to You (BBC Maida Vale Session)

Sunday 19 August 2018

She Took a Lot of Pills (And Died)

When it comes to the Most Country of Country Song Titles the great Robbie Fulks almost merits a series of his own.
Alternatively you could just play his debut album Country Love Songs from 1996 and on the ever excellent Bloodshot label. Apropos of nothing my copy is second hand, the original being the property of Birmingham Libraries.
There is a strong possibility that more Bloodshot artists may appear in this accidental series.

Robbie I'm pleased to say is still going strong with his latest album Into the Wild! being a double act  with Linda Gail Lewis the  little sister of  Jerry Lee.
Someone I suspect who isn't guilty of liking Every Kind of Music But Country.

Robbie Fulks - She Took a Lot of Pills (and Died)

Robbie Fulks - Tears Only Run One Way

Saturday 18 August 2018

Sin City

Another recent charity shop acquisition is Sin City - 14 L..A. Rock Classics yet another Uncut compilation this time from February 2014.
Plenty of quality on display but the likes of The Flying Burrito Brothers (I wonder what songs!), Little Feat, Green on Red, NWA and The Blasters will have to take their chances at a later date.

Rather I have gone for two folkies who lived fast and died young. and two who I don't really have anything by.
Tim Buckley has appeared briefly before as part of my Burnt Offerings series. The name is more familiar to me than the music.
However this version of Chase The Blues Away from his 1969 album Live at the Troubadour is rather special.
Equally special is Dark of My Moon from former Byrd Gene Clark taken from Gypsy Angel:The Gene Clark Demos 1983-1990.

Further exploration on both counts clearly required

Tim Buckley - Chase The Blues Away

Gene Clark - Dark of My Moon

Friday 17 August 2018

Disco Friday #5 - Boogie On Down

It's Boogie Night on Disco Friday this week so all aboard the Boogie Bus and Boogie Oogie Oogie til you just can't boogie no more,
Two bona fide boogie classics from Disco Legends .Forty floor fillers or thirty eight if you exclude The Nolans and Lee Garrett.

Somewhat criminally Boogie Nights by Heatwave only reached number 2 when it charted in January 1977. They went on to have a further seven hit singles (eight if you include a remix) but I suspect that like me you may well be pushed to name any of them.
A Taste of Honey were less prolific with Boogie Oogie Oogie being their only hit single reaching number 3 in 1978 and number 59 second time around in 1985.

Boogie nights are always the best in town. Keep on dancing.

Heatwave - Boogie Nights

A Taste of Honey - Boogie Oogie Oogie

Thursday 16 August 2018

Today I Sing The Blues

Rest easy Aretha

Aretha Franklin - Today I Sing The Blues

Say A Little Prayer

It is desperately sad to read that the Queen of Soul Ms Aretha Franklin is seriously ill and is currently receiving hospice care at her home.
I'm sure that you will join with me in showing some respect and saying a little prayer.


I Say a Little Prayer

Rumer - Aretha

Wednesday 15 August 2018

Little and Large #5

It's Barbed Wire Love versus Whiskey and Good Time Blues this week.
Belfast punk versus country Blues.

In the little corner we have Stiff Little Fingers with a track from their brilliant 1978 debut album Inflammable Material the first album to be distributed  by Rough Trade and the first independent album to chart in the UK.

In the large corner we have Lee Conley Bradley better known as Big Bill Broonzy  with the title track from his contribution to the Blues Collection recorded in Chicago some 39 years earlier in 1939.

A score draw I feel.
More little and large contenders next week.

Stiff Little Fingers - Barbed Wire Love

Big Bill Broonzy - Whiskey and Good Time Blues

Tuesday 14 August 2018

Midwest Farmer's Daughter

Margo Price is one of those country artists who operates very much on the cusp of alternative and mainstream country. She also has a large following in the UK (thanks to a Later with Jools Holland appearance) and so is similar to Kacey Musgraves and Courtney Marie Andrews in both respects.

From 2016, on Third Man Records,  Midwest Farmer's Daughter is her debut solo album being quickly followed up by 2017's All American Made.It was live to analog tape at Sun Studios in Memphis.Previously she had recorded three albums as part of the band Buffalo Clover.

Old fashioned tales of heartbreak, love and loss (Paul Grein) but with a modern twist. Released to much critical acclaim.
The last of my birthday purchases .... for now

Margo Price - Hands of Time

Margo Price - Hurtin' (On The Bottle)

Monday 13 August 2018

Fossil Scale

This one is down to The Robster
Georgia Ruth Williams, who records as Georgia Ruth, first came to my attention via his wonderful Welsh Wednesday series. Also the place where I first encountered Gwenno I think
She was added to the list where she remained for far too long until I acquired her second and latest album Fossil Scale from 2016 and released on the Navigator label.
Indie folk with just a little bit of electronica sneaking in here and there. She also plays the harp and presents a show on BBC Radio Cymru
On the basis of the excellent stuff on Fossil Scale her 2013 debut Week of Pines is probably well worth tracking down as well.

Georgia Ruth - Cloudbroke

Georgia Ruth - Sylvia

Sunday 12 August 2018

Must You Throw Dirt in My Face

Must you keep telling me you've got a new love I don't need you to remind me
Must you keep telling me I look so lonesome and that my better days are behind me
Must you keep showing me pictures of him and boasting of his warm embrace
You've already put big old tears in my eyes must you throw dirt in my face
It would take  a brave woman to taunt Ira Louvin in such a way given that he once tried to strangle his wife with a telephone cord. She did, however, extract revenge by shooting him four times. He survived but died along with his fourth wife in a car crash aged 41.
There was somewhat of a dichotomy between Ira's hard drinking lifestyle and his Baptist faith.
The altogether more sensible Charlie lasted until 83 dying on pancreatic cancer.

Oh, and just before we go please remember that Satan is Real

Saturday 11 August 2018

React Or Die

After a few days posting birthday purchases and those pesky series it is back to our raison d'etre  -charity shop purchases.
Fitting too to feature on a Saturday as that is the day I tend to check out my local shop.
Two Saturday's away I came away with a nugget. From 2009 I came away with React Or Die the second of the three albums by Glasgow band Butcher Boy.
Pretty rare to find something like this among the normal dross and for 50p to boot

I saw them last year playing in the (empty) swimming pool at Govanhill Baths. The acoustics were such that I could make out the music but not the words.
It's good to hear both!
Another Glasgow band who are not afraid to use a cello.

Butcher Boy - This Kiss Will Marry Us

Butcher Boy - A Better Ghost

Friday 10 August 2018

Disco Friday #4 - Can You Feel It

It's 1981 and we are off again to Club Tropicana for another Friday night of disco stompers.

The Jacksons surely need no introduction - Jackie, Tito, Marlon , Randy and young Michael (wonder whatever happened to him?).
From March 81 Can You Feel It only reached number 77 in the US pop charts and number 30 in the R&B charts. It did better in the UK reaching number 6 and even better in The Netherlands where it one off the top spot.

Body Talk was the debut album by Imagination who I didn't realise were a British bands.Reaching number 4 it was their second most successful single bettered only by Just an Illusion which got to number 2. Not sure how it did in The Netherlands.

I shudder to think how Alyson's friend  who used to dance very literally to the lyrics would have interpreted these two numbers!

Can you feel it, can you feel it, can you feel it
Can you

The Jacksons - Can You Feel It

Imagination - Body Talk

Thursday 9 August 2018

The Missing Piece of the Delgados Jigsaw

Until last week Peleton was the missing piece of the Delgados jigsaw.
Their other 4 studio albums plus The Complete BBC Peel Sessions sat proudly on the shelves with a glaring omission.
From 1998 on their very own Chemikal Underground label it is their second album.and the last to feature a cycling reference in the title.
It also saw their first hit single Pull the Wires From the Wall if number 69 can be deemed to be a hit. It was also number one in John Peel's Festive 50 in 1998 which makes it a hit in my book.
They had 3 entries in the Festive 50 with Everything Goes Down the Water at number 9 and the Actress at 39.
They had a long association with Peel playing at Peel Acres for Sheila's 50th Birthday and taking John to the Electric Bar in Motherwell for a pub quiz which features in  the Sounds of the Suburbs TVseries.

The Delgados - Pull The Wires From The Wall

The Delgados - Everything Goes Around The Water

Wednesday 8 August 2018

Little and Large #4

I'm quite enjoying mixing my genres in this series.
Both songs today could easily have  been matched with someone much more similar but where is the fun in that?.

Today's little is Esther Mae Jones a Soul and Blues artist who recorded as Little Esther Phillips.
She started as a singer in Johnny Otis' band but her career was dogged by drug addiction sadly leading to an early death in 1984 at the age of 49.
This song is taken from a Mojo Compilation - Music Guide Vol 3 - Raw Soul.

Medicine Show was the third single from This is Big Audio Dynamite the debut album of the band formed by Mick Jones after leaving The Clash. Released in June 1986 it was in the charts for 5 weeks peaking at number 29
Don't be fooled by imitation
This is the stuff that cured a nation

I'm thinking of adopting that as this series' mantra
More tunes that cured a nation next Wednesday

Little Esther Phillips - Mojo Hannah

Big Audio Dynamite - Medicine Show

Tuesday 7 August 2018

OMG (Oh, My Girl)

Another glaring hole in the shelves filled - this time in the Americana section.
I'd the occasional song by Jesse Sykes and the Sweet Hereafter on compilations but none of their albums. That has now changed.
2003's Reckless Burning and 2004's Oh, My Girl on the Barsuk Records in the States and the French label Fargo in Europe have been duly purchased.
A band pretty much at the other end of the spectrum from yesterday's featured artist Camera Obscura.

Sparse. Dark. Gothic. Brilliant.
The kind of music that once it is finished you feel the urge to go and lie down in a darkened room. But in a good way.
Oh, My Girl today.,Reckless Burning in due course (once you have recovered)

Jesse Sykes & the Sweet Heareafter - Oh, My Girl

Jesse Sykes & the Sweet Hereafter - The Dreaming Dead

Monday 6 August 2018

Let's Get Out Of This Country

I got the Tracyanne and Danny album for my birthday.
It is excellent. Playing it highlighted a major gap in my record collection - a distinct lack of Traceyanne Campbell's band Camera Obscura. The only thing I have is a burn of their last album Desire Lines
Given that I also received the modern equivalent of a record voucher I decided to do something about it.

I was torn between Let's Get Out of This Country and My Maudlin Career so I did the sensible thing and got them both.
From 2006 and on the Spanish Elefant Records label LGOOTC is the older of the two.
You should all be familiar with Lloyd, I'm Ready to be Heartbroken. I posted it just over a year ago but it merits being posted again.
The title song was also a single and again is not too shabby.
MMC will feature in due course. Other birthday purchases will feature shortly.

Camera Obscura - Lloyd I'm Ready to be Heartbroken

Camera Obscura - Let's Get out of This Country

Sunday 5 August 2018

If I Can't I Trust You With a Quarter (How Can I Trust You With My Heart?)

This week's instalment of the accidental series The Most Country of Country Song Titles comes from Austin band  Zoe Muth and the High Rollers with a song from their 2011 album Starlight Hotel

Described by that bastion of musical critique The Telegraph (London version as opposed to Dundee version) as authentic country done afresh.

The title of the song makes it a worthy addition to this series . Plus, how could you ignore a song that states
When you said you’d never heard John Prine,
Well I knew right away you weren’t worth my time.

Something I'm sure that we would all sign up to.

If you can trust yourself with a dollar it 's yours from Bandcamp

Zoe Muth & the Lost High Rollers -If I Can't Trust You with a Quarter (How Can I Trust You With My Heart)

Zoe Muth & the Lost High Rollers - Let's Just Be Friends For Tonight

Saturday 4 August 2018

Birds Are Indie

Birthday Greetings came winging through the World Wise Web from our Portugal correspondent along with a download of Local Affairs the latest offering from Portuguese band Birds Are Indie.
George informs me that they are from Coimbra which appears to be a hotbed of independent music given that A Jigsaw and The Twist Connection who have also appeared here hail from there.
Coimbra apperently is a university town halfway between Lisbon and Porto which has a football team called Academica who are not very good.

It is somewhat basic and pretty simplistic music but is none the worse for that. Rather that is probably it's strength.
You are only getting one track given that it is a new album but if it tickles your fancy it is available on Bandcamp. Alternatively let George know when your birthday is and hope for the best.

Also available on Bandcamp is Half Empty a 1997 album by Brooklyn power popper Michael Shelley. Another one courtesy of George.

Birds Are Indie - Messing With Your Mind

Michael Shelley - Think With Your Heart

Friday 3 August 2018

Disco Friday #3

This week we feature the second of Mrs CC's recent Ballantrae purchases which were the inspiration for this series.
Club Tropicana - Classic Hits from the Eighties is a 3 CD compilation featuring 60 songs.
They are not all Disco - I shall spare you the likes of Toto, Mr Mister and Men at Work.
There are however some classic disco grooves in the mix.

Inside Out from Odyssey reached number 3 in 1982 meaning it was their second biggest hit after their 1980 number 1 Use It Up and Wear it Out.
KC and the Sunshine Band on the other hand kindly provide us with their only number 1 1983's Wear It Out

Na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, now Baby give it up

More floor fillers next Friday

Odyssey - Inside Out

KC and the Sunshine Band - Give It Up

Thursday 2 August 2018

Maria McKee x 4

There have been plenty of occasions round these parts when records have been bought twice and maybe even three times, but I am pretty confident in stating that Maria McKee's solo debut album is the only one ever bought on four occasions.
Let me explain.
I bought the  album a good number of years ago, in Echo on Byres Road I think.
Then a couple of years ago I bought the CD version as it has the magnificent but bonkers Drinkin' in My Sunday Dress on it which is not on the vinyl version.

Then I bought a copy in Oxfam in Victoria Road as a housewarming present for a pal who had just moved into a flat. Turns out he already had it.

Then as part of my birthday presents package Mrs CC gave me a copy she had picked up in Oxfam in Newton Mearns not knowing/forgetting that I already had it on vinyl!
It's the thought that counts!
Wonder if it is the same one - must check.*

A good enough excuse to feature a couple of tracks

Maria McKee - I've Forgotten What It Was In You (That Put the Need in Me)

Maria McKee - To Miss Someone

* I checked and it isn't the same one!

Wednesday 1 August 2018

Little and Large #3

For this weeks's Little and Large read Tiny and Giant.

The Tiny is New Zealand singer Holly Fullbrook with her band Tiny Ruins. We saw them at Celtic Connections in 2015 along with Blue Rose Code.
I was a bit disappointed with the live set to be honest but this song Carriages which is  part of a free CD conpilation I picked up called New Zealand Country Focus is rather good. Somewhat reminiscent of This is the Kit - no bad thing.

The Large are Tuscon desert noir band Giant Sand with a number from their 2000 album Chore of Enchantment on the Loose label (on Thrill Jockey in the States).

More next Wednesday.

Tiny Ruins - Carriages

Giant Sand - Astonished (In Memphis)